Secrets of Wyatt Earp and the O.K. Corral
It is American legend. The Wild West where just about anything happened out in the frontier. Many movies over the years have depicted this historic event called, "The shootout at the O.K. Corral" in Tombstone, AZ. It was between Sheriff Wyatt Earp and other members against the Clantons, a notorious bunch of thugs who chased women and robbed incoming silver shipments. It was the real thing, opposing groups armed with six-shooters waiting for someone to draw. When it was over, the Clantons were dead or running. Now, Wyatt Earp could try to create a model frontier law abiding town.
The funny thing is Wyatt Earp was part sheriff and part criminal. He ran a local brothel, operated cassinos and ripped off others in land deals. He was a womanizer and chaser, being married four times, well actually, once, the other three were not formal marriages just cohabitation. His first wife died while in childbirth, a son. His second "wife" was an addict.
It was his fourth "wife", Josephine Marcus, that seemed to really be "love", for they stayed together for over 40 years. However, the evolution is like any modern love twist. She had come to Tombstone to perform in a Gilbert\Sullivan production of "HMS Pinafore" and met Earp's rival, Johnny Behan, often with the Clanton gang. She had an affair while Behan was still married. When the show was over, she returned to San Francisco but Behan soon followed, wooing her to come back to AZ. She did. That relationship was stormy because of his infidelity.
Angry and hurt, Marcus, 18, met Wyatt Earp, 32. As time went on, both men competed for her affections and pissed one another off. This was a year before the showdown. Earp was now with his third "wife" and soon would choose Marcus to live with. When Earp broke off the relationship with the third victim, she committed suicide but only after becoming a prostitute.
The shootout was part about relationships and jealousy and part about illegal activities. Once done, both moved to various places- San Diego, Nome, Hollywood. Earp was successful in land speculation and horse racing until his death in 1929. She died in 1944.
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